[From the National Library of Australia's Forgotten Australians and Former Child Migrants oral history project]
Dilys Budd talks about her early life in Wales; being in a foster home followed by the Nazareth House orphanage; her mother's visits and death; the orphanage routine, their basic education; orphanage funding; after school activities; the selection of children for Australia; the nuns and benefactors; effects of WWII; leaving for Australia (1947), the voyage and arrival in Western Australia; St Joseph's Girls Orphanage, Sisters of Mercy, child-staff ratio; institutionalization; relations between migrant and non-migrant children; the daily routine; welfare inspections; the smells and sounds of the orphanage; the maternity wing and unmarried mothers; medical and dental care; deaths in the orphanage; schooling at St Mary's School, classrooms; the special classes for brighter girls leading to office work; no preparation for post-institution life; childhood and adult perceptions of religion; orphanage discipline; sexual abuse; bullying; celebrations eg. Christmas; play areas, organized sport, play equipment; films and concerts; working in the foundling home; on leaving the orphanage being allocated employment with the Health Department, learning typing, working on switchboard; placement in accommodation after leaving the orphanage.
Budd talks about escaping the control of Catholic Child Welfare; joining the Army Nursing Corps; attending night school; her reasons for leaving Perth; the lack of public awareness of institutionalized children; the closure of institutions; the funding of her return to the UK (1997); family reunions and publicity; arriving in Melbourne, working in Kew Mental Asylum; later work in the Taxation Department; meeting her future husband and their successful marriage; motherhood and learning parenting; telling her children about her childhood; returning to Nazareth House, UK; her identity documents and Australian citizenship; the move to Canberra (1965); joining the Department of Trade (1970), her retirement and return to work in Department of Foreign Affairs; her husband's work; contact with former child migrants; the compensation by Western Australian Government to institutionalized children; her reaction to British Government's apology; her views on removal and the Catholic Church's apology; the Senate inquiry; advocacy groups; attending the Australian Government's apology to the Forgotten Australians; reunion with friends from Perth; rejecting the term 'Forgotten Australians'; the similarities and differences between the child migrants' experiences and those of the Stolen Generation.
Prepared by: Debra Rosser
Created: 24 August 2012, Last modified: 14 August 2017